Last week a cousin e-mailed Shark Girl. He got his DNA tested and wanted to share what he learned with all his matrilinear relatives. Among the various tidbits about haplogroups and other things I can’t pronounce, Cousin added,
“Apparently, we're also distantly related to Petrarch.”
For those of you who don’t know who Petrarch was, first, join the club, and second, you can Wikipedia him. I must warn you that Cousin felt Petrarch was “Chinese food famous.” This means that about an hour after he Wikipediaed Petrarch, he forgot what the big deal about him was.
I (kind of) know who Petrarch was because he wrote a lot in Latin. I just returned from a conference of classical professionals where a scholar presented a paper on Petrarch. I probably wouldn’t have gone to the paper, but I felt obligated, being related to him and all.
Since I now have famous poet blood in me, and since Husband started complaining that Shark Girl is “formulaic,” I thought I’d branch out and give you some submission grappling poetry. I know . . . just what you’ve been waiting for. And for all you Latin geeks out there, this poem is inspired by Book II of Vergil’s Aeneid. (I haven’t titled it yet and am open to suggestions.)
But look! Across the field of blue
Writhing and snapping like snakes
After a careless foot has disturbed their resting place.
Without seeing they sense my presence
And stretch to reach me.
Biting, they embrace my back
And coil around my slippery neck,
Squeezing out my air.
The hiss of blood blocked from its path
Fills my ears.
What madness drove me to the mat?
© 2012 by Shark Girl (because you know you want to steal it)